Mi Casa, Your Casa
As part of a two-year initiative to activate the Sifly Piazza and engage the community in the vibrant campus of the Woodruff Arts Center designed by Renzo Piano, the High Museum of Art unveiled an ambitious interactive design installation entitled Mi Casa, Your Casa, conceptualized and created by contemporary Mexican designers-in-residence Héctor Esrawe and Ignacio Cadena. Mi Casa, Your Casa was a site-specific installation that invited the community to actively participate in the life of the entire Woodruff Arts Center campus through recreation, social interaction, performances, and art-making activities. Mi Casa, Your Casa was a welcoming space where visitors played, created and relaxed. Hammocks, swings, easels, bins of chalk, and buckets of bubble water, among other elements, offered daytime “playtime” options. The Woodruff divisions (Alliance Theatre, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Arts for Learning) utilized the installation for performances, youth education and more. The High also collaborated with artists and performers from across the Atlanta arts spectrum to enliven the space. These highly unique and original collaborations allowed visitors to experience some of Atlanta’s most compelling artists in exciting new combinations as they explored new territory and branched out in fresh and unexpected directions to bring the Piazza to life with art.
The installation featured 40 three-dimensional open frames in the shape of a house, The houses formed a blank canvas for community engagement and activity in a basic- straight foreword- form recognizable and relatable to all ages and cultures: The home, a simple metaphor of warmth and welcoming. Mi Casa, Your Casa was inspired by the lively street markets – “mercados” – of Latin America where human connections are made every day. The chromatic quality of the object responded to the red color painted steel structures that house each merchant and to design intention of creating high contrast against the white purity of Richard Mier´s and Renzo Piano´s Architecture. The installation design objectives aspired to intrigue, invite, activate, build connections, blur boundaries, engage with the community, amaze, wonder, travel, mutate, bring joy, build identity and a sense of belonging. Mi Casa, Your Casa more than an installation was a living object, a space… to be inhabited, a stage… to be observed, a workshop… to learn and a blank canvas… for open expression and interactivity, not one related to technology, but to human physical interaction.